Despite changes in hiring strategies and an increased push for inclusion, many large corporations are still struggling to increase diversity within their tech workforces.
Global employment advisor Staffing Industry Analysts reported that “68% of companies feel there is a lack of diversity in their tech workforces, according to a survey in the ‘Diversity in Tech: 2021 U.S. Report’ by publishing house John Wiley & Sons.”
More than 2,000 young tech workers from over 270 different companies responded to the survey, which revealed that, despite many of these organizations being aware of the problem, only 46% of companies were actively addressing the issue. Perhaps most disturbingly, it also found that more than 1 in 5 (22%) of the companies surveyed said they had no idea how to address the issue.
More startling findings from the John Wiley & Sons report:
- Even after the summer of 2020, when social reform was heavily discussed throughout the public discourse, 45% of businesses surveyed failed to invest in anti-bias training for their hiring managers.
- The workplace continues to be an uncomfortable space for many underrepresented segments of the workforce. Sixty-eight percent of respondents between the ages of 18 and 28 said they had been made to feel uncomfortable on the job because of either their gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic background or neurodevelopmental condition — among women of color, that number soared to 77%.
- Approximately 50% of young tech workers reported that they had either left a job or wanted to leave a tech or IT job because their company’s corporate culture left them feeling either unwelcomed or uncomfortable. For women of color, that percentage of respondents with similar experiences increased to 57%.
In response to the survey results, Daniele Grassi, chief operating officer for Wiley’s “mthree” organization (which finds, trains, and places workers in the IT field), said it’s more important than ever for companies to look at their tech workforce strategically and really make an effort to enact change within it.
“With 9 million unfilled jobs currently in the U.S., the economy will continue to struggle as it experiences a labor shortage, especially if companies are ill-equipped to recruit and retain a diverse tech workforce,” Grassi said. “Expanding and diversifying talent pipelines will get great workers in high-demand tech jobs faster, benefitting both companies and workers.”